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Date Sweetened Summer BBQ Sauce

An easy and homemade barbecue sauce that’s sweetened with Tasti Soft & Juicy Dates. This must-make recipe is the perfect addition to any NZ Summer BBQ!


1/2 medium white onion, diced

4 cloves garlic minced

1 can tomato paste

1 can diced roasted tomatoes

1/3 cup apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup blackstrap molasses

1/4 cup Tasti Soft & Juicy Dates

1/2–3/4 cup water, or as needed to reach your desired consistency (we used 3/4 cup)

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon mild chili powder

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

Salt and pepper, to taste

Optional: 1/8–1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste

Optional: Dash of ground cloves


1. Saute garlic and onion for around 3 minutes.

2. Add the tomato paste, paprika, and cloves. Cook, stirring constantly for 3 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients (except the salt and pepper), and cook on medium-high heat until you reach a boil.

3. Reduce the heat to low, and simmer covered for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste test as you go, but don't add more molasses or dates until you have pureed the mixture (the next step). As the sauce cooks, the dates sweeten, adding even more sweetness when you puree.

4. After 30 minutes, remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool for 10 minutes. Transfer the sauce to a  blender and run until smooth.

5. Add salt and pepper to taste - adjust seasonings as desired and cook for a few more minutes before you taste again. Your sauce is now ready to bottle and refrigerate (will keep well for up to one week).

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